What to mark black fabric with?

mrseldooDecember 17, 2007

I am working on my bright/black Dear Jane quilt. Black is my background.

Some blocks I like to hand piece. I am having trouble finding something to mark the seams on the black material. I tried a silver marking pencil from JoAnn's- it showed up well, but the lead kept breaking. The chalk pencil I have is a little too thick on the line. Any suggestions?



P.S> I have gotten 43 blocks out of 169 done so far! Wohoo!

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I have something called the chaco liner that should work. It has a little wheel on the bottom and the chalk comes out in a fine line. I love it, I got it in one of the swaps and it's one of my favorite tools. Clover is the brand name.


    Bookmark   December 17, 2007 at 5:01PM
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Clover now makes a White Marking Pen that erases with water or ironing. It won't rub off. They are not cheap, $6-7, but it works great, easy to see on dark fabrics. When you use it, it takes a few seconds to "show up" and it is a nice thin line.
I just marked a feather vine on a dark blue border for hand quilting (4 borders of a bed-size quilt), and it didn't run out until almost the end. The barrel is clear so you can see how much ink you have left. Keep it capped so it doesn't dry out. A lot of my friends use it for hand applique, to mark the seam allowance, so I imagine it would work well for hand piecing. Just remember not to iron it or wet it until you are finished stitching.

Here is a link that might be useful: White Marker

    Bookmark   December 17, 2007 at 5:25PM
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I haven't washed any of my quilts (no bed quilts), so I can't speak to washability.

That said, I have white pencils, silver pencils, no leads break. The white is marked "General's pastel chalk", the silver is marked "Sanford verithin". Both use regular pencil sharpeners.

What about plain chalk, or the edge of a colored piece of tailor's chalk, the edges are very thin.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2007 at 5:50PM
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The older ladies at church mark with a sliver of soap. I don't know if this would work for you but it's worth a try.
good luck!


    Bookmark   December 17, 2007 at 6:40PM
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I have used the "White Marking Pen CLOVER" and it is as BlueBars says. The ink takes a minute to dry, but then can be seen as a fine, opaque line that doesn't rub off easily. It washes out easily with cold water. The ball point means that the line can be drawn with great accuracy. I think this is a gel pen. This makes me wonder if a glittery gel pen might be even more visible on black fabric, but I'm not sure how well it would wash out. Sounds like I'm gonna hafta run another test! ;-P

Another thing I like: At Joann Fabrics, they have a set of chalks, in assorted colors, with a plastic holder. The chalks can be sharpened separately from the holder, which means less breakage and a finer point. I sometimes use emery boards (nail files) to sand the point, for an even finer line. This rubs off relatively easily, so is of limited use.

I have not tried any silver pencils yet. I read that a particular brand of silver pencil is very good. I wish I could remember which brand it was. I think it was Aquarelle. It was an artist pencil, at any rate. It might be available singly at Joann's, in the section with the watercolors and paintbrushes. I'm going to put that on my shopping list, as I have been meaning to try it one of these days.

I ran a search to try to find the name of the silver pencil, and this might be helpful, (if you enlarge the font!)
Marking Pencilshref>
It seems that more than one brand might work just fine.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2007 at 9:51AM
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    Bookmark   December 19, 2007 at 9:09AM
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If it is straight lines...I use painters tape ..comes off easily and leaves no marks. If it isn't straight lines...I use a very thin point chalk pencil which I found at our local fabric store here in Winnipeg, Man. I'm sure you could find them in the States as well....

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:46PM
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